Carl Wilhelm von Nägeli (26 or 27 March 1817 – 10 May 1891) was a Swiss botanist. He studied cell division and pollination but became known as the man who discouraged Gregor Mendel from further work on genetics. He rejected natural selection as a mechanism of evolution, favouring orthogenesis driven by a supposed "inner perfecting principle".
1 Birth and education 2 Academic career 3 Contributions 4 See also 5 Notes 6 References 7 External links
Birth and education
Nägeli was born in Kilchberg near Zurich, where he studied medicine
at the University of Zurich. From 1839, he studied botany under A. P.
de Candolle at Geneva, and graduated with a botanical thesis at Zurich
in 1840. His attention having been directed by Matthias Jakob
Schleiden, then professor of botany at Jena, to the microscopical
study of plants, he engaged more particularly in that branch of
Soon after graduation he became
Privatdozent and subsequently
professor extraordinary, in the University of Zurich; later he was
called to fill the chair of botany at the University of Freiburg; and
in 1857 he was promoted to Munich, where he remained as professor
until his death.
It was thought that Nägeli had first observed cell division during
the formation of pollen, in 1843. However, this is disputed by
Henry Harris, who writes: "What Nägeli saw and did not see in plant
material at about the same time [as Robert Remak] is somewhat
obscure... I conclude... that, unlike Remak, he did not observe
nuclear division... it is clear that Nägeli did not in 1844 have any
idea of the importance of the nucleus in the life of the cell."
In the 1857 that microsporidia where first described by the Nageli.
This was due to them being the agent in causing pebrine disease of
silkworms which devastated the silk industry in Europe (Texier et al,
Among his other contributions to science were a series of papers in
the Zeitschrift für wissenschaftliche Botanik (1844–1846); Die
neueren Algensysteme (1847); Gattungen einzelliger Algen (1849);
Pflanzenphysiologische Untersuchungen (1855–1858), with Carl Eduard
Cramer; Beiträge zur wissenschaftlichen Botanik (1858–1868); a
number of papers contributed to the Royal Bavarian Academy of
Sciences, forming three volumes of Botanische Mitteilungen
(1861–1881); and, finally, his volume, Mechanisch-physiologische
Theorie der Abstammungslehre, published in 1884. However, perhaps
Nägeli is best known nowadays for his unproductive correspondence
University of Freiburg
^ Naegeli, Carl Wilhelm von (20 September 1884). "Mechanisch-physiologische Theorie der Abstammungslehre" – via Max Planck Institute for the History of Science: Virtual Laboratory Library. ^ "IPNI Author Details". www.ipni.org. ^ a b Neuenschwander, Erwin. "Nägeli, Carl Wilhelm von". HLS-DHS-DSS.CH. ^ "VL People [per346]". vlp.mpiwg-berlin.mpg.de. ^  ^ W. T. Sedgwick and H. W. Tyler, (1917). A short history of science. p. 429. ^ Henry Harris. (1997). The Cells of the Body: A History of Somatic Cell Genetics. Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, Plainview N.Y. p. 15. ISBN 978-0879694609 ^ Kara Rogers. (2011). The Cell. Rosen Educational Services. pp. 136-137. ISBN 978-1615303144 ^ Peter J. Bowler. (1989). Evolution: The History of an Idea. University of California Press. p. 248. ISBN 978-0520261280 ^ IPNI. Nägeli.
This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Naegeli, Karl Wilhelm von". Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Karl Wilhelm von Nägeli.
Short biography and bibliography in the
Virtual Laboratory of the Max
Planck Institute for the History of Science
Biography and work (in German)
Entire facsimile text of "Mechanisch-physiologische Theorie der
WorldCat Identities VIAF: 47499711 LCCN: n86814754 ISNI: 0000 0001 0857 2634 GND: 115774874 SELIBR: 340455 SUDOC: 162496923 HDS: 28894 NLA: 35765960 NKC: nlk20010095529